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Bible Commentaries

Bullinger's Companion Bible Notes

Proverbs 17

Verse 1

Better. See note on Proverbs 8:11 .

sacrifices = slain beasts. Hebrew. zebach. App-43 .

Verse 3

the LORD. Hebrew. Jehovah. App-4 .

trieth the hearts. Illustrations: Abraham (Genesis 22:1 ); Israel (Deuteronomy 8:2 ); Hezekiah (2 Chronicles 32:31 ); Martha and Mary (John 11:5 , John 11:6 ); young man (Matthew 19:16-22 ); woman (Matthew 15:23-28 ).

Verse 4

wicked = mischief maker. Hebrew. ra'a'. App-44 .

liar. Hebrew "lie". Text not "corrupt"; but "lie "is put by Figure of speech Metonymy (of Effect), App-6 , for the man who habitually lies: i.e. a liar is always ready to believe a lie. Illustrations: Ahab (1 Kings 22:6 ); Jews (Isaiah 30:9-11 .Jeremiah 5:30 , Jeremiah 5:31 .Micah 2:11; Micah 2:11 ).

Verse 5

mocketh. Illustrations: princes of Judah (Isaiah 3:14 , Isaiah 3:15 ; Isaiah 10:1 , Isaiah 10:2 .Jeremiah 34:10 , Jeremiah 34:11 ); rich (James 5:4 ).

the poor = a needy one. Hebrew. rush. See note on Proverbs 6:11 .

Maker. See note on Proverbs 14:31 .

unpunished = held guiltless. Illustrations: Tyrians (Ezekiel 26:2-6 ); Edom (Obadiah 1:10-15 ).

Verse 6

Children's = Sons'.

Verse 7

speech. Hebrew "lip", put by Figure of speech Metonymy (of Cause), App-6 , for what is spoken by it.

fool. Hebrew. nabal. See note on Proverbs 1:7 . Not the same word as in verses: Proverbs 17:10 , Proverbs 17:12 , Proverbs 17:16 , Proverbs 10:24 , Proverbs 10:25 .

lips. See above note.

Verse 8

him that hath it = its owner (the bribed, not the briber).

prospereth = it sparkles. And he loves to look at it and keep it. Compare "gift", Proverbs 17:23 .

Verse 9

transgression. Hebrew. pasha'. App-44 .

very friends = true friends.

Verse 10

wise man. Hebrew. binah. See note on Proverbs 1:2 .

fool. Hebrew. kesil . See note on Proverbs 1:7 .

Verse 11

evil = evil worker. Same word as "wicked", Proverbs 17:4 .

Verse 12

a bear = a he-bear (masculine because it is always construed with a masculine verb).

her whelps = his mate.

man. Hebrew. 'ish. App-14 .

folly. Hebrew. 'evil. See note on Proverbs 1:7 .

Verse 14

beginning of strife. Illustrations: Ephraimites (Judges 12:1-6 ); Abner (2 Samuel 2:14-17 ); Rehoboam (2 Chronicles 10:1-16 ); Jeroboam (2 Chronicles 13:17 ); the Twelve (Matthew 20:24 ).

when one letteth out = the letting loose (as by making a breach in a dam).

be meddled with = gathereth volume.

Verse 15

justifieth the wicked, &c. Illustrations: the counsellors (Ezra 4:1-16 ); Tertullus (Acts 24:1-9 ); Ahab and Jezebel (1 Kings 21:5-24 ). Note the Figure of speech Paronomasia ( App-6 ). Mazdik rasha' umarshia' zadik, which may be Englished, "he who wrongs the right and rights the wrong".

the wicked = a lawless one. Hebrew. rasha'. App-44 .

the just = a just one.

abomination, &c. See note on Proverbs 3:32 .

Verse 16

Wherefore is there a price, &c. = Why is this ready money in the hand of a fool to get wisdom when he has no sense? Illustrations: Israel (2 Chronicles 30:10 ); the Jews (Luke 4:28 ); Herod Antipas (Luke 23:11 ); Jews (John 5:40 ; John 8:45 ); Athenians (Acts 17:32 , Acts 17:33 ); Felix (Acts 24:25-27 ); Agrippa (Acts 26:28 ).

wisdom. Hebrew. chakmah. See note on Proverbs 1:2 .

heart. Put by Figure of speech Metonymy (of Subject), App-6 , for the sense in it.

Verse 17

loveth at all times. Illustrations: Abraham (Genesis 14:14 . Compare Proverbs 13:11 ); Joseph (Genesis 45:5 ; Genesis 50:21 ); Moses (Exodus 32:11-13 .Deuteronomy 9:18 , Deuteronomy 9:25-29 . Compare Acts 7:40 ); Jonathan (1 Samuel 20:33 ); Barzillai (2 Samuel 19:32 ); Ahikam (Jeremiah 26:24 ); Ebed-melech (Jeremiah 38:7 ); Paul (Philemon 1:12 , Philemon 1:20 ); Barnabas (Acts 9:27 ); Aristarchus (Acts 19:29 ; Acts 20:4 ; Acts 27:2 .Philemon 1:24 .Colossians 4:10; Colossians 4:10 ); Luke (2 Timothy 4:11 ); Epaphroditus (Philippians 1:2 , Philippians 1:26 ).

Verse 18

man. Hebrew. 'adam. App-14 .

understanding. Hebrew "heart", put by Figure of speech Metonymy (of Cause), App-6 , for the understanding in it. See note on Proverbs 1:2 .

Verse 19

he that exalteth his gate, &c. : i.e. a rich man, who thus proclaimed his wealth (Eastern doors being generally low-pitched and uninviting),

courted destruction. This explains 2 Kings 25:9 , where "every great man's house he (Nebuchadnezzar) burnt with fire".

Verse 21

fool. Hebrew. nabal, as in Proverbs 17:1 .

Verse 22

spirit. Hebrew. ruach. App-9 .

Verse 23

gift = bribe. Compare Proverbs 17:8 . This is the act of the briber, not the bribed.

bosom = lap. See note on Proverbs 16:33 .

Verse 24

before = is the goal of.

Verse 27

spareth his words. Illustrations: Aaron (Leviticus 10:3 ); Moses (Numbers 16:4 ; Numbers 20:6 ); Samuel (1 Samuel 8:6-8 ); Christ (1 Peter 2:23 ).

understandings discerning. Hebrew. binah. See note on Proverbs 1:2 .

excellent = quiet.

Verse 28

fool. Hebrew. 'evil, as in verses: Proverbs 17:16 , Proverbs 17:22 . See note on Proverbs 1:7 .

understandings = wisdom (i.e. a wise man).

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Bibliographical Information
Bullinger, Ethelbert William. "Commentary on Proverbs 17". "Bullinger's Companion bible Notes". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/bul/proverbs-17.html. 1909-1922.